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Author Topic: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery  (Read 10737 times)

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Offline SerephinoTopic starter


Offline Vekseid

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2011, 03:53:15 PM »
Especially rich considering so much of his income came from Medicare.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2011, 04:16:04 PM »
"[...] we are obligated, as Christians, we are obligated to the Hippocratic Oath [...]"

I found that quote quite interesting, given that the original oath is sworn by the Greek gods (Hygeia, Panacea, Apollo and one other that I can't remember right now, but you can Wiki god of medicine to find it) and includes such things as swearing not to perform an abortion, and also swearing to support your teacher for as long as he lives, teach his kids, etc.

It was also written a couple centuries before Christ.

Dude, you fail at basic Greek history.

Also, we already have a system of indentured servitude in place in our education system, especially for med school. In addition to student loans, some hospitals will help pay your tuition if you promise to work in their hospital as a GP for a certain amount of time. Heck, the Army has indentured doctors through the AMEDD program. Don't talk to me about slavery, dude. I'm a college student.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2011, 04:25:41 PM »
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hippocratic_Oath 

Its telling in the old form or modern the doctors are to put patiants first and historically doctors were not well paid they did make money and had extremely high job security but were in most cultures middle class. So in Greece part of the oath was to help the family of the physician that taught you in case they were in need like your students would then tend to your family.


Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2011, 08:10:08 PM »
Just like how taxes are like the Holocaust? Hell, just about everyone is Hitler by now, aren't they? If they're not Hitler, they're definitely a nazi, whether or not they realize it.

Glad we're not overexaggerating the issue or anything. Y'know -- to-may-to, to-mah-to. Taxes, mass genocide. Healthcare, slavery. Same difference.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2011, 08:15:09 PM by Noelle »

Offline Oniya

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2011, 08:15:29 PM »
I found that quote quite interesting, given that the original oath is sworn by the Greek gods (Hygeia, Panacea, Apollo and one other that I can't remember right now,

Asclepius.  Not to mention the fact that the Oath itself is named after 'Hippocrates', who is of the same vintage as Pericles (ca. 460 BCE – ca. 370 BCE).

Offline Trieste

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2011, 08:17:58 PM »
That's him. I think the staff with the swirlies around it is named after him (but gets confused with the caduceus, which was the apothecaries' symbol).

/tangent >.>

Offline SerephinoTopic starter

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2011, 10:25:08 PM »
The oath is just words anymore.  There used to be a time when doctors cared.  Now, they only care when you have insurance or money.  I had to pay up front for my gallbladder surgery, even though I was in agony.  I need some tests done now.  Same story; I'll get the test when I come up with the cash.  My illness isn't life threatening; at least I hope not.  My symptoms are broad and vague.  I can't get the test because there's no proof it's life threatening, but I need the test to prove it.  Right now neither me or my doctor know what's wrong, and we won't until after July 1st, if Medicare will even cover it...

Rand Paul really has no room to talk.  He gets free government run healthcare, as do the rest of his friends that whine and bitch the government run healthcare is un-American.  If it's so horrible, maybe they should give theirs up, and buy private insurance.

Practically every other country in the world has nationalized health care.  Doctors aren't being dragged out of their homes in the middle of the night; at least not that I've heard of.  The only problem I see is that those doctors aren't rolling in obscene amounts of money.  It seems like Republicans are using the usual demonizing scare tactics, except they're now having to come up with crazier and crazier justifications; which I can only hope most Americans are too smart to buy into. 

I am so sick of them trying to scare me into seeing their point of view.  It has never worked on me, and I take great offense at being accused of not being a real American because I have no problem sending them letters and emails telling them to go fuck themselves with something sharp. 

Offline Trieste

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2011, 10:29:08 PM »
I think that a lot of our healthcare problems would be solved if Congress were banned from buying private healthcare, but had to use the Medicare system.

Same thing with a wage; I think that the problem of having a living wage would be solved if Congress had to live with a salary that was no higher than minimum wage. They argue against raising minimum wage while voting to give themselves pay raises. Place the minimum wage law on them and then watch how fast minimum wage skyrockets...

Before anyone jumps on me about how unrealistic that is, I'm going to point out that it's just hypothetical, an observation. Nothing more.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2011, 10:38:42 PM »
If you couldn't live a posh lifestyle and build a fortune by sitting in Congress, who would want to be there? (Yeah, I know many a senator does have a private fortune before they even run)

Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2011, 11:02:22 PM »
I don't think it's a matter of doctors not caring...I think that's projecting a larger system down to a handful of people who probably don't have any say in the matter. We're not living in the 1950s anymore where the good ol' boys can cut you a break because they know your ma and she's a swell lady. Hospitals have expenses too and you're not the only person who's hurting. I can't fault them for trying to keep their own doors open even though I wish it were different.

Besides, doctors earn a higher income than a lot, this is true, but they also have to do a hell of a lot more and incur a lot more debt than most to get where they are. Thing is, I don't think socialized healthcare would work out without a simultaneous reform for tuition costs -- lowering doctor pay while keeping their schooling bills so high and increasing demand is going to end up disastrous.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2011, 11:30:01 PM »
But saying doctors would be forced into debt slavery or would have to jump out of bed at a moment's notice in the middle of the night or risk getting sacked, under a system that provided public health insurance to all the population, that's just scaremonger arguments and an attempt to invoke the commie ghosts. Doctors in most European countries (where you often have single-payer systems for core healthcare) earn very comfortable amounts of money and they don't have any real trouble raising their incomes if they want to: they're not forced to work under some sort of fixed wages.

Single-payer systems don't mean that private clinics are getting outlawed or obstructed, only that if they ask a huge amount more than the range of fees set for public hospitals, they don't get commissions through the public  for treatment that would fall under public healthcare insurance. No one is prohibited from signing up on or offering insurances above and outside public healthcare; that market exists too and those insurers and clinics can charge as much as they want to. They just do not get to become the only real alternative for any major group of people, so the pricing doesn't rocket away for everybody, particularly not when there's a sizable upper crust that'äs got the money to pay high prices and (under "free market conditions") would turn the market into a long-term medical auction.

I would agree you've got a point Noelle that if doctors rack up exorbitant expenses in order to get their grade, and there's a lid on how many are actually getting trained, then there could open up a gap between the supply of doctors and the need for medical services. But that should be attacked by lowering the fees for medical studies, supplying more support for students and opening up more med colleges. Doctor will never become a profession that people feel is useless to take on because they won't be making any real money. Plus, America imports doctors who already have a degree.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2011, 11:39:45 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #12 on: May 16, 2011, 11:39:16 PM »
I don't disagree with anything you're saying. Obviously they're ringing alarm bells that don't exist and their feigned concern for those who can't afford medical bills is laughable, at best. Anyone with half a mind can see the GOP does not have an outstanding record of giving a damn about the middle class and below.

The only thing I disagree with is the blame coming down to doctors that don't care...I don't think they go through ~12 years of schooling and incur massive debt to not care. The system isn't working in any average person's favor right now and people/institutions are just trying to keep their own hide out of deep water. It's not fair -- believe me, I know this in anticipation of my own medical bills to come -- but I can't entirely blame people for looking out for themselves when money's tight and more and more people are turning up uninsured.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2011, 11:51:53 PM »
I'd agree the problem is political at heart, and that in a system where you have a wide swathe of people who are not insured, or who have never held an insurance, you can't hope to solve the trouble just by appealing to individual "hero doctors" and trying to pin the blame on meds who do not work 36 hour shifts with people who, in the end, might not be able to pay.

It's the same with schools: if the kids are illiterate and don't understand the main language of the country, one shouldn't pin the blame for failure on the teachers (and those are conditions that exist both some places here and in some places in America)
« Last Edit: May 16, 2011, 11:53:13 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2011, 10:55:08 AM »
The video is very disturbing for a number of reasons.  That the senator would actually make the statement that Emergency Departments are an extension of a right to healthcare is ridiculous since the Emergency Department is a major drain on most hospitals.  Many people do use the ED as their primary provider and that becomes expensive considering all the staffing that must occur there.  I really cannot believe he made that recommendation.  That the ED does not provide comprehensive care was about the most intelligent statement he made during his little tirade.  EDs specialize in “treat and street,” not in primary care.

Blaming hospitals is largely short sighted since most operate in the red for their budgets.  Many procedures a hospital performs are not reimbursed by the person due to lack of insurance or the insurance company does not cover the entire expense.  For instance, much of the cost of a transplant patient is taken up by the hospital.  Certainly there is money floating around but the hospital itself is not taking in that money.

Seeing that someone believes the Hippocratic Oath is only words to a doctor is similarly disheartening.  These same men and women put in 80 hour work weeks making less money than anyone would think.  Once we tallied up the hours a resident worked with his yearly salary and he averaged around 2 dollars an hour.  Doctors show up to disasters where they are not going to be paid, check on their patients from vacations they are taking and come to work at 3 in the morning without any notice.  They fight for their patients to get coverage, fight for their patients in any way they can.  I’ve seen a plastic surgeon come to fix a woman’s face after her boyfriend beat her and he did this for free.  I’ve seen a doctor do three transplant surgeries back-to-back because the organs were there and the patients needed them.  The doctors I work with shower, sleep and eat in the hospital.  Doctors showed up for work during Hurricane Katrina and risked their licenses to do what they felt was right for their patients in some cases.

To blame nurses and doctors for this situation is like blaming the sergeants and officers on the field for a war.

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2011, 11:47:22 AM »
So let me get this straight, no one here thinks claiming to have a right to the work of another person sounds even a little bit like slavery? I mean, yes, Rand Paul was being a bit over the top in his language, but just leave the choice of words aside for a moment and consider the idea. Granted, it isn't slavery the way blacks were enslaved in the past, but again, are you really going to tell me that claiming to have a right to the work of another person does not sound even a little bit like slavery?

Offline Oniya

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2011, 11:58:24 AM »
Would you say that having the right to police and fire service is slavery?  Both of these fine professions are at the beck and call of the public, via the 911 system. 

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2011, 12:04:59 PM »
I consider having police and fire fighters to be a privilege, not a right. Self-defense is a right. Having someone else defend you is not. Caring for/treating your own health issues is a right. Having someone else do it for you is not.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #18 on: May 17, 2011, 12:05:57 PM »
Not any more than the current ER system is 'slavery'. After all, you go to the ER, and you essentially ask them for medical care no matter whether you can pay for it or not. Usually that's why people go to the ER.

If nothing else, the multitude of other countries to look at, and none of them - Canada, Britain, et al. - have random press-gangs searching out doctors in the night. None of them.

Offline Oniya

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2011, 12:18:42 PM »
I consider having police and fire fighters to be a privilege, not a right.

Sooo, you believe that those services could be denied to someone for whatever reason?

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #20 on: May 17, 2011, 12:22:59 PM »
If nothing else, the multitude of other countries to look at, and none of them - Canada, Britain, et al. - have random press-gangs searching out doctors in the night. None of them.
Cute, but I'm pretty sure that press-gangs are not prerequisite for slavery.

Not any more than the current ER system is 'slavery'. After all, you go to the ER, and you essentially ask them for medical care no matter whether you can pay for it or not. Usually that's why people go to the ER.
That is a fair point. But that doesn't mean the current ER system does not bear some resemblance to slavery via the expectation that one has a right to the effort and time of someone else. I'm not saying the ER system is necessarily bad or wrong. But, saying that claiming to have a right to the work of another person seems like slavery, is that really so far fetched? Yes, the ERs seem to work that way, but that we can point to an example of it happening doesn't mean it's correct or good. That is sort of like saying, "well, the other kids at school do it."

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #21 on: May 17, 2011, 12:41:48 PM »
Sooo, you believe that those services could be denied to someone for whatever reason?
Could, yes. Mind you, I'm not saying they should. Don't conflate acknowledging with supporting. I am sure there have been plenty of blacks in our country's history who have felt they cannot expect police to help them. Probably plenty of immigrants, legal and illegal, too. A quick search turns up http://www.wpsdlocal6.com/news/local/Firefighters-watch-as-home-burns-to-the-ground-104052668.html, about a man who had not paid the fee for fire protection, and so the firefighters refused to do anything to save his home when it caught on fire. So, yes, I believe those services could be denied to someone. Again, not saying should, just saying the possibility exists.

These services are privileges basically granted by government. And what the government provides it can also take away. This is one fundamental reason why I consider having police and fire fighters to be a privilege and not a right. The other fundamental reason being that I also believe no person or group of persons has a right to the effort and time of another person or group of persons.

Offline Vekseid

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #22 on: May 17, 2011, 01:58:14 PM »
Could, yes. Mind you, I'm not saying they should. Don't conflate acknowledging with supporting. I am sure there have been plenty of blacks in our country's history who have felt they cannot expect police to help them. Probably plenty of immigrants, legal and illegal, too. A quick search turns up http://www.wpsdlocal6.com/news/local/Firefighters-watch-as-home-burns-to-the-ground-104052668.html, about a man who had not paid the fee for fire protection, and so the firefighters refused to do anything to save his home when it caught on fire. So, yes, I believe those services could be denied to someone. Again, not saying should, just saying the possibility exists.

The fire department in question originally did answer such calls, but people refused to pay after the fact, or had their checks bounce, etc. So the issue in this case is not all that one sided.

Offline Oniya

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #23 on: May 17, 2011, 02:41:36 PM »
In some places, the fire departments and police departments are funded out of jurisdictional taxes (local/city/county).  In fact, every election in Ohio since I moved here has had one or more jurisdictions voting on increases to fire/police/ambulance funding.  As a result, if you pay your taxes, you're already paying for fire/police/rescue services.

Frankly, the article in question reminded me of Marcus Licinius Crassus's 'fire brigade' in Rome.  Crassus created this brigade, which rushed to burning buildings at the first cry of alarm. Upon arriving at the scene, however, the fire fighters did nothing while their employer bargained over the price of their services with the distressed property owner. If Crassus could not negotiate a satisfactory price, his men simply let the structure burn to the ground, after which he offered to purchase it for a fraction of its value.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 02:43:22 PM by Oniya »

Offline SerephinoTopic starter

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2011, 03:20:44 PM »
If health care is considered a right, and the government provides an affordable health care system....

No one would be forced to become a doctor.  I do agree with Noelle that if they are going to lower their pay, then they should lower the cost of the education.  Education is another system that's badly broken, but that's a whole other topic.  Also, they would still get paid.  How in the hell is that slavery? 

Slaves are forced to work, and don't get paid.  I have no objection to paying for health coverage, but it has to be something I can afford.  I don't like going to the ER and then having to go through the Welfare Office, or hospital charity.  Something run by the government where premiums are based on income doesn't sound like such a horrible idea to me.

And me saying that the oath doesn't mean anything to doctors anymore may be disturbing, but it's how I feel.  Don't get me wrong, I know there are those that care.  My family doctor cares.  But then there is the Psychiatrist that told me to keep taking a medication that was making me suicidal.  There are the surgeons and specialists that let me sit and be sick and miserable until I can cough up an obscene amount of money.

I understand they need to make money, but if they cared, why can't they treat me, then bill me?  Why are they so content to let me suffer?  Why couldn't I possibly pay a percentage up front, then be billed for the rest?  They refuse to work anything out, and I ended up not being able to eat for MONTHS, until I got a credit card with a high enough balance, which ended in bankruptcy.

I'll admit my feelings are from serious frustration.  It's hard to explain what it feels like to be very sick, but not able to get any care because you're poor.  The doctors don't even try to work something out with you so you can be treated.  They just tell you to come back when you have insurance; which is pretty much impossible because no one wants to cover a pre-existing condition even if you do find something you can afford short term.  Can someone explain to me how that's doing no harm?  That Psychiatrist seriously needs his license yanked... 

While some doctors care, others drive flashy sports cars, don't understand why you can't afford insurance on Social Security, and treat you like a piece of trash that's wasting their time.  Sadly, I run into those that don't care more than those that do.   

Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2011, 05:01:36 PM »
Cute, but I'm pretty sure that press-gangs are not prerequisite for slavery.

Also cute, but do you know what the prerequisites for slavery are?

Quote
slave  (sleɪv) [Click for IPA pronunciation guide]
 
— n
1.    a person legally owned by another and having no freedom of action or right to property
2.    a person who is forced to work for another against his will
3.    a person under the domination of another person or some habit or influence: a slave to television
4.    a person who works in harsh conditions for low pay
5.    a. a device that is controlled by or that duplicates the action of another similar device (the master device)
    b. ( as modifier ): slave cylinder

The only thing about healthcare that even remotely resembles the gross exaggeration that is the comparison to slavery is definition #4 and that has absolutely nothing to do with rendering healthcare available universally. What's more, even that weak link still doesn't even remotely resemble the oppressive humanitarian crisis that is the actual institution of slavery and not the overblown term used by politicians as a scare tactic for gullible Americans. It is, quite frankly, a ridiculous alarmist buzzword and nothing more. It's meaningless. It's like calling everyone Hitler or a nazi or suggesting that the taxes are like the Holocaust. Nobody's saying you can't disagree with certain ideas, but to compare it to something completely inappropriate for the sake of shock value says to me that your reasoning alone isn't strong enough to support your ideas.

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #26 on: May 17, 2011, 05:08:31 PM »
I think we can leave the overblown rhetoric to the politicians though. They have to feel there's something they're good at, while the rest of us discuss matters like civilised folks :)

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #27 on: May 17, 2011, 05:46:21 PM »
The fire department in question originally did answer such calls, but people refused to pay after the fact, or had their checks bounce, etc. So the issue in this case is not all that one sided.
I don't recall suggesting it was one sided.

Offline itsbeenfun2000

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #28 on: May 17, 2011, 08:47:09 PM »
Police protection is paid for, not a right or a privilege, it is a paid for service through tax dollars and in most municipalities fire protection. Education on the other hand is a right. Has been since the beginning of the country when the founding fathers recognized you needed an educated population to run a democracy. This does not make teachers slaves, they are paid for it just like any other job and like any other job can walk away from it.



Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2011, 08:53:06 PM »
I have to chip in and add that just because something isn't a right doesn't mean it's not still a highly important and integral part of our functioning society. We have socialized roads and infrastructure as well as a whole military which I suspect are highly vital to maintaining our standard of living as well as protecting it. I'm pretty sure the DOT and servicemen and women aren't slaves, either...well, more so on the military part, I'm not really sure what kind of sick soul would volunteer to work with the DOT D:

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2011, 09:51:23 PM »
Police protection is paid for, not a right or a privilege, it is a paid for service through tax dollars and in most municipalities fire protection.
That is it paid for makes it no less a privilege.

Education on the other hand is a right.
That is a simplification. I would say one has a right to gain education, but one does not have a right to the time and effort of others to provide that education.

I have to chip in and add that just because something isn't a right doesn't mean it's not still a highly important and integral part of our functioning society.
And I would say just because something is important and perhaps even integral to our society doesn't mean the best way to get it is to have it provided by government.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #31 on: May 17, 2011, 09:59:30 PM »
... so, anyway, getting back to the original topic, I enjoyed the fact that it appears they had a panel of both healthcare professionals and healthcare administrators present at the hearing. However, I'm not really able to find more information about the panel itself and what came of it. Were the results published at all? Was there a report issued?

Offline Xajow

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #32 on: May 17, 2011, 10:11:09 PM »
Also cute, but do you know what the prerequisites for slavery are?

The only thing about healthcare that even remotely resembles the gross exaggeration that is the comparison to slavery is definition #4 and that has absolutely nothing to do with rendering healthcare available universally. What's more, even that weak link still doesn't even remotely resemble the oppressive humanitarian crisis that is the actual institution of slavery and not the overblown term used by politicians as a scare tactic for gullible Americans. It is, quite frankly, a ridiculous alarmist buzzword and nothing more. It's meaningless. It's like calling everyone Hitler or a nazi or suggesting that the taxes are like the Holocaust. Nobody's saying you can't disagree with certain ideas, but to compare it to something completely inappropriate for the sake of shock value says to me that your reasoning alone isn't strong enough to support your ideas.
I agree. Rand Paul was over the top with his comparison. It's really not an appropriate comparison. But then it's not really much worse than the nonsense other politicians say to scare people into supporting or not supporting this or that. I'm not saying Paul doesn't deserve criticism for his comment, because he does, but I have a hard time mustering up shock that a politician used a ridiculous hyperbolic comparison to make a point.

Offline Noelle

Re: Rand Paul: Right to Healthcare= Slavery
« Reply #33 on: May 17, 2011, 10:20:30 PM »
Thing is, all of that kind of language needs to stop from all sides on any issue. Nothing is the Holocaust except the Holocaust. Nothing is Hitler except Hitler. It's important to call out idiotic rhetoric for what it is en masse and demand a higher level of dialogue not just for the sake of more intelligent politics, but we've cheapened the hell out of those terms to the point they only mean what we want them to mean. Not that I think it'll happen anytime soon (cynic!), but the fear-mongering is a cheap tactic and quite frankly, pretty old. We're always trying to scare one group or the other into believing X or Y agenda and it's really not healthy. The facts should speak for you and if you have to resort to terms with pre-loaded feelings, then you're not doing your point any great favors.

I agree that we don't need to dig out the pitchforks and torches for Rand Paul especially, but maybe it's in light of both him and Bachmann using historically loaded guns to try and blindly fire at any kind of outrage they can get in the same period of time that I feel especially harsh.


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And I would say just because something is important and perhaps even integral to our society doesn't mean the best way to get it is to have it provided by government.

Interesting you should say that, given the private sector isn't doing so well on their own with the very healthcare we're speaking of and botched our banking situation too, at that. Government involvement/oversight doesn't automatically make anyone a slave nor does it turn our state of affairs into systematic denial of rights for medical professionals. It doesn't necessitate a 100% takeover, especially so as there are systems in the world that work well with a hybrid of government care as well as offering people the choice to go private. I'm more of a believer in balance. I think both the private sector and the government have their strengths and weaknesses and do not necessarily need to be mortal enemies.

I feel like I should echo Trieste's earlier sentiments, that those who have the power to legislate should probably take a spin on the private healthcare pony on the salary of the average American before crying about balance and what's fair. Their government-sponsored coverage seems to be doing them quite well.